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27 August 2009

Commentary: Ted Kennedy loathed Britain - so why did Gordon Brown knight him?

Sometimes it is right to speak ill of the dead. The truth matters, even when it is deeply unsavoury. The truth about Ted Kennedy is certainly unsavoury.

Not that you'd know it from yesterday's tributes, dominated by sycophantic humbug.

'A great and good man,' said a fawning Tony Blair. 'A true and constant friend of the peace process in Northern Ireland,' said Northern Ireland Secretary Shaun Woodward.

The tributes left for Ted Kennedy
Eulogised: The tributes left for Ted Kennedy were full of praise but a lot of his past was unsavoury

Gordon Brown was 'proud to have counted him as a friend and proud that the United Kingdom recognised his service earlier this year with the award of an honorary knighthood'.

Proud? He should be ashamed. Kennedy was a formidable and Machiavellian political operator in the U.S., but he was no friend of Britain. In fact, he was one of our most committed and unrelenting enemies on Capitol Hill.

In his anti-British sentiments, he took after his father, Joseph P. Kennedy, who was unable to hide his bigoted views during a shameful spell as U.S. ambassador to Great Britain.

Ted did his father proud. As a politician dependent on Irish-American votes, this master of empty rhetoric had no scruples about spreading the bitter message of Irish republicanism, especially if there was an election at stake.

Indeed, his pro-republican record was unblemished, though he was never in favour of violence. When Northern Ireland descended into violence, it was Kennedy who, in 1971, gave aid and comfort to the IRA by comparing British attempts to prevent civil war with the U.S. invasion of Vietnam.

He, like the IRA, supported the republican Troops Out movement, and demanded that Ulster Protestants opposed to a united Ireland should 'go back to Britain'.

He also blamed the 1981 hunger strikes on the 'insensitivity' of the Thatcher government rather than cynical republican leaders sacrificing prisoners for electoral advantage.

Gerry Adams and Kennedy
Gerry Adams and Kennedy - the U.S. senator was a big supporter of the Irish nationalist cause

Later in life, as he came under the influence of the Irish government, he began to moderate his stance on Northern Ireland. But he remained a vociferous critic of the British government and the Royal Ulster Constabulary.

It was never enough that he occupied a safe Senate seat, 'inherited' from his father, who had bought it with a fortune made from bootlegging.

He believed he was entitled to the U.S. presidency, too. And had he not caused the death of Mary Jo Kopechne at Chappaquiddick in 1969, he may well have been able to ride his brothers' reputations all the way to the White House.

While it cost him the presidency, it failed to dampen his obscene sense of entitlement.

And so, in 1993, in a breathtaking example of nepotism, he persuaded President Bill Clinton to appoint his shamefully ill-qualified sister, Jean Kennedy Smith, as U.S. Ambassador to Ireland.

Kennedy wanted his sister in the job for two reasons. First, he owed her. In 1991, Ted had spent the evening drinking heavily with her son, William Kennedy Smith. Later that night, William took a woman to the beach, who went on to accuse him of rape. Though found not guilty, the trial was lurid and his mother was distraught.

Second - and more importantly - Ted Kennedy had his Irish nationalist agenda to pursue. And how better to do this than through a sister who would defer to a bullying male relative?

By this time, Sinn Fein and their IRA masters were on their knees, militarily, financially and electorally. But Ted was committed to using his influence to support the nationalist cause. And Jean was only too happy to help.

She made no secret of where her loyalties lay - as ambassador, she represented the interests not of the U.S., but of the Irish nationalists.

The U.S. State Department would later rebuke her for the way she treated diplomats who dared to question her. Ireland would tellingly reward her with honorary citizenship.

After all, she was, like her brother, an enemy of Britain and devoted to the nationalist cause.

While his sister supported the nationalists and republicans in Ireland, Ted worked to bolster their cause in the U.S.

In 1994, he persuaded Bill Clinton to go against the express wishes of Prime Minister John Major and grant former terrorist Gerry Adams a U.S. visa.

It's always suited nationalist interests to claim this decision was instrumental in bringing about an IRA ceasefire. In fact, it merely set a precedent for the weak-willed appeasement that would be adopted as British government policy once New Labour were elected.

Indeed, as Tony Blair took over the peace process, everyone seemed to forget that Ted Kennedy was an enemy of Britain. He was suddenly repackaged as a friend.

The truth is that the warm words for Kennedy - not to mention the honorary knighthood - are shameless exercises in self-justification.

Like Ted Kennedy and other nationalist sympathisers, Blair and Brown would have us believe they forged a peace to be proud of - rather than just handing over the keys of power to bigots and terrorists.

And so, working on the Goebbels principle that if a lie is big enough and is repeated often enough then people will come to believe it, Blair tells us that the life-long Brit-hater Kennedy's 'passionate commitment was matched with a practical understanding of what needed to be done to bring about peace and to sustain it'.

Well, sorry Mr Blair, Ted Kennedy was neither great nor good. And sorry, Mr Woodward, he was a friend of Irish nationalism, not of the peace process.

Nor did he serve the interests of Britain, Mr Brown. He served only the interests of Edward Kennedy. By singing his praises, they are all betraying Britain.

Ruth Dudley Edwards

Read the 96 comments:

Excellent article, exposing Ted Kennedy for his true colours, an enemy to Britain and an enemy to the innocent vitims of IRA violence. Far from being a key anti Noraid campaigner he was a key noraid fund raiser, and it is fact that he made several secretive trips to Northern Ireland which were funded by and facilitated by noraid.

- will-a, Northern ireland, 28/8/2009 11:36
Rating 41

Refreshing to hear the truth spoken in the media, especially about the Kennedy clan, the man is or was a murderer, he left a girl to die /drown in a car what a coward hiding behind the family name on more than one occasion

- Kevin, Exmouth, Devon, 28/8/2009 11:23
Rating 57

Ian of Banbury. I never wrote it was 'just' British aristocrats and merchants involved in slavery. Every empire was at it. The British led the world in trying to abolish it. I was just saying that making a fortune bootlegging was not as bad as making it from slavery, as SOME U.K. aristocrats and merchants did. Edwards, the upper middle class unionist Catholic from the Irish Republic, has no evidence that Kennedy was a bootlegger. The Orange Lodge defender writes Kennedy was one of 'our' enemies. Kennedy got the license to legally sell Scots whisky in the 1930s after repeal of prohibition. During prohibition, he worked as a stock broker for Hayden and Stone and later for himself. Later, he owned cinemas, made films and bought up of New York property cheaply in the depression. Prof Mark Haller of Temple University investigated the U.S. Coast Guard's files on bootleggers and found no mention of Kennedy. Edward helped Johnson's voting rights act in 1964 and saved it from Reagan in 1982

- michael, dublin ireland, 28/8/2009 10:18
Rating 36

Ruth, just why are our politicians so gutless and craven about this man who only ever detested our country? A Knighthood for him just devalues that honour.

- Stephen, London, England, 28/8/2009 10:06
Rating 47

The reason Brown gave Kennedy a honorary Knight hood, because he wants Obamas endorsement for next years general election.
Brown and his government are a crafty bunch, they should be kicked out.

- peewee, tiverton devon uk, 28/8/2009 9:00
Rating 41

Refreshing to read an article that does not canonize a Kennedy and insinuate he walked on water.

- Tomas, Alicante, Spain, 28/8/2009 8:53
ating 57

at last sense this guy was no friend of britain ergo northern ireland , he favoured ira enough said

- william, torrevieja spain, 28/8/2009 8:48
Rating 28

You forgot the part about daddy Joe being a smuggler and the fact that Teddy left Harvard after cheating.

- Bob Colonist, Cambridge, USA, 28/8/2009 4:29
Rating 27

This is the type of superficial article that you would expect to see in the Mail from a blinkered unionist "historian". The history of Northern Ireland is a complex one and from the separation of the Island at
that start of last century and not one that can be looked back on with any great credit by several British administrations. Kennedy was not an IRA supporter and was a key campaigner against Noraid and the IRA in the 1980's and played a key part in getting US administrations involved in getting to where that society is today. Far from perfect but improving. That you are an Irish Nationalist does not equate to been anti British. The nasty form of patriotism displayed here by many people who know very little of Kennedy's role in N Ireland is not of course helped by the author with her skewed facts and misinformation. "The truth matters" does it Ruth. How would you know?

- Eddie, Clapham, london, 28/8/2009 3:58
Rating 26

I don't think being pro-Irish makes you anti British. Ted came from Catholic family so I am sure that is why he did not like the Ulster Irish and with good reason. Catholics in this country have been treated pretty badly and his brother Jack was very lucky to over come the prejudice and become the first Catholic president of the USA. I am Presbyterian myself but I see my Catholic friends often treated badly and that makes me very sad.

- Beth Boyle, Mayville USA, 28/8/2009 3:36
Rating 24

I found your article narrow minded and bigoted against a man who was an Irish nationalist but never supported violence.

- Ralph, York, 28/8/2009 0:40
Rating 28

Even by the superficial standards of Jim of Dublin his posting is ridiculous. He was principally in charge of collecting money for the IRA. Read your history Jim!

- nick chance, worcester, ENGLAND, 28/8/2009 0:07
Rating 19

Surely, the question answers itself..........

- Robert, Worcester UK, 27/8/2009 23:29
Rating 9

great article!!!!! congrats

- ymmot, uk, 27/8/2009 22:58
Rating 13

This has to be the most ignorant and disgusting article I have ever read, I could not believe what I was reading, it was just incredulous. This man hepled to bring peace to N.Ireland was the greatest ever American Senator who devoted his life to peace, civil liberties health and education (something you could quite clearly do with) who are you trying to fool ? He didn't like the British ? with your attitude I'm not surprised, actually it would be laughable if it wasn't just plain sick. I agree, shame on you.

- Robin, London, 27/8/2009 22:55
Rating 23

Teddy may have loathed Great Britain but he sure loved the Scotch.

- Angus, Texas, 27/8/2009 21:12
Rating 21

ted kennedy, he will not be missed!
he was just another obama style puppet for the N.W.O.
just like the bush family he took the new world order money
and sold his soul for 30 pieces of silver.

- jon, newcastle, 27/8/2009 21:05
Rating 15

Somebody said Ruth Dudley Edwards was a Unionist, but she belongs to the Irish Republic and is a Roman Catholic. I think her offence is to be fairminded.

- Jeremy Hummerstone, Torrington, England, 27/8/2009 19:54
Rating 10

Ted Kennedy was a loser who should have been booted out of the Senate.

- Chase, Texas, USA, 27/8/2009 19:54
Rating 17

Giving this loathsome individual a knighthood only serves to demonstrate how morally bankrupt Nu Liebour politicians are. Eulogising about a man who was as obnoxious as Mandelson still is shows an offensive lack of empathy with those on the receiving end of his dishonesty and empire building. Only the British would do this...the rest of the world must gaze in wonderment at our arrant gullibility and stupidity.

- Mark, Harrogate, 27/8/2009 19:48
Rating 18

What a family.

- Jim McWhinnie, London England, 27/8/2009 18:40
Rating 39

Blair, Brown, Kennedy and Obama - enemies of the US and UK.

- Mike, Leatherhead UK, 27/8/2009 18:18
Rating 54

So he was opposed to Britain's policy on the north of Ireland. Wow, what a monster!


- Michael Steiner, EU, 27/8/2009 17:35
Rating 88

Disinclined to examine anything the pudgy hypocrite did during his life bar the Chappaquiddick episode. Quite why he found it necessry toi flee the scene of a car crash then fail to inform the police for several hours raises questions as to whether he was drunk or otherwise intoxicated at the time. A direct result of his action was the death of a young woman that was evidently avoidable. As to the comments from various political pygmies in this country, all I would say is that by their eulogies you shall know them. Intriguing that Brown should find himself able to comment about Kennedy almost before the corpse cools yet on the more domestic matter of the Libyan bomber the Great Communicator seems unable to find the words.
Kennedy was a politician for many years....longevity and success are not two sides of the same coin and he wanted desperately to hold the highest office, not simply polish a senatorial seat for half a century.

- Keith Mackman, Dunmow, Essex, 27/8/2009 16:52
Rating 61

There may, indeed, be a time to speak ill of the dead. This is not one of them. Shame on you..

- therealpixie, Efland USA, 27/8/2009 15:56
Rating 100

Connor. Why are you still in Windlesham exactly?

- Tracey, Paisley, Scotland, 27/8/2009 15:13
Rating 27

Gordon Brown knighted Ted Kennedy.....it just goes to show that Brown is either being 'worked' from the back like a dummy or he has very poor judgement.

it's all very well Kennedy harping on about the English in Ireland but what about the Americans in Hawaii..........they just moved in and made it a state didn't they?

Kennedy left a woman in a car to die.....not drown.....she suffocated. He should have gone to prison but then you can get away with almost anything if you are a Kennedy.

We need straight talking!!

- Bill, Yorkshire, 27/8/2009 14:36
Rating 85

There is something wrong with our politicians when they eulogise Ted Kennedy who, as you say, was very anti-British. Yet Daniel Hannan is jumped on by labour politicians for saying Enoch Powell was one of his heroes. Whether you thought he should have made THAT speech or not, Powell was a very principled and honourable man and had a great intellect. Cameron should not cower at labour's attacks on Hannan but stand by him. Hannan is no racist.

- GMel, Turkey/Warrington, 27/8/2009 14:12
Rating 72

Finally! It's wonderful to read the truth about Kennedy for once, not like here in the US with the bought and paid for media who refuse to print the truth about any politician. I have total recall of Chappaquiddick and how Kennedy reacted, and how he was forgiven by the Kennedy family worshippers. I have totally despised that man ever since.

- grisgris13, Texas, USA, 27/8/2009 14:02
Rating 149

Even by the superficial standards of Ruth Dudley Edwards her article is ridiculous. Anyone who thinks Kennedy was an IRA supporter doesn't know their history. He was a key campaigner against Noraid and the IRA in the 1980s. He publicly slammed Sinn Féin over the killing of Robert McCartney. He lobbied rightly for Adams to get a visa because Adams needed to get access to the US to lobby IRA supporters in the US to get them to support an end to violence. The Irish Government and many others saw that and tried to get John Major to grasp it, but the British government foolishly failed to understand that if Adams couldn't get in he couldn't get IRA supporters to accept peace. As usual she plays to audience because she knows they don't know

By the way, lest anyone be in any doubt I have contempt for the IRA and Sinn Féin. But Dudley Edwards' article, as usual, is clichéd and simplistic. She calls herself a historian, yet shows no understanding of history, sinking to the level of the SUN.

- Jim, Dublin, 27/8/2009 13:19
Rating 105

How he never got done for murder was because of his family and connections. He was not a good man but a cynical coward.

- antipolitician, UK, 27/8/2009 13:10
Rating 111

Excellent article with another own goal scored by Clown Brown in having this man knighted...he really doesn't get it does he?

- alex, hereford, england., 27/8/2009 12:43
Rating 71

What a brilliant article - at last someone tells the truth.Ted Kennedy hated the UK and so did his father Joe although he was delighted to be Ambassador to the UK.

- Gwynne Kelly, Eccleshall, 27/8/2009 12:22
Rating 128

Just to clarify the record Ted Kennedy actually supported constitutional nationalism. He opposed Noraid and worked with John Hume. He was no Provo fellow traveller. Any British Bulldog types should try reading the Irish Times assessment for a more balanced assessment of Kenned'y Irish legacy.


- Wesley Dolan, Athlone, Ireland., 27/8/2009 12:19
Rating 86

To have awarded Kennedy an honorary knighthood was an insult to the families of all those innocent soldiers and civilians murdered by the IRA - a terrorist organisation whom Kennedy supported - and also to the family of the girl he left to die in his car whilst he sought legal advice on how to save his own skin.

- R.F.Yorks, Yorks, UK, 27/8/2009 12:14
Rating 89

Finally, an article that speaks the truth about Ted Kennedy! After reading glowing tributes all day yesterday, it was fantastic to read the truth about this hideous "Lion" and his life of deception. Pray that the people of Mass will find themselves a more honorable, reputable and worthy senator after decades of this self absorbed narcissist.

- Sandra, Jeffersonville, USA, 27/8/2009 12:07
Rating 86

While I am sorry for the man's sickness and suffering and don't delight in his family's personal pain at his death, this man was a political monster. He was a hater of freedom in all it's forms and saw it as his birthright to be Cesar of America. He was morally bankrupt in his personal life and the more degenerate he became, the farther left he lurched until he was nothing more that shrill voice for any and every tyranical movement the government ever made. While JFK was a tax cutting, free trade Democrat, Teddy was an outright Communist who swore he was championing freedom. May we never see his kind in office again!

- Lisa, Charlotte NC USA, 27/8/2009 12:03
Rating 106

Although we only have fond memories of JFK and Bobby (and history keeps unearthing disclosures about them that gradually tarnish those memories), Teddy was able to demonstrate his true colours.
Whether JFK and Bobby would have done so if they had not been murdered, who knows.

I always find it amazing of my fellow Americans that they struggle with their "current" national indentity (e.g. American) and that they all strive to seek their "forefathers" and claim to be Irish, Italian, Dutch etc.

Teddy was clearly one of these that thought he could swagger the world stage to pursue his distrorted "Irish" agenda, while representing these "Irish / Americans".

I am sad anyone has to die and my thoughts are with the family. But I am glad we now longer have to listen to his mis guided rhetoric. The only down side is that there are more than enough on both sides of the Atlantic to continue it.

- Terry, Cambridge and Canton, 27/8/2009 12:01
Rating 81

Brown will be knighting ghaddafi soon.

- Richard widmark, Newcastle uk, 27/8/2009 12:00
Rating 72

Sorry Michael from Dublin it wasnt just " British aristocrats & merchants " that made money from slavery . A huge number of Americans did so also - so much so that they prolonged slavery way past the abolition date that Britain passed in 1833 ( British ships were banned from carrying slaves in 1807 ) The American Civil War was prompted , in part , by the Southern states not wanting slavery to end - so much so that it was only formally abolished in the US at the end of the Civil War in 1865 with victory for the Northern states - some 32 years after Britain.

Even then it took a further 100 years for Civil rights in America to improve significantly for the Black community in the South - i think Martin Luther King & the Civil Rights movement had more to do with that than Ted Kennedy !

Think on that before you condemn only Britain - other countries also took part & made similar huge profits out of human misery.

- Ian Pocock, Banbury Oxon, 27/8/2009 11:58
Rating 75

Oh! my word, what is this country coming to.

This government, will embrace any shyster, from any despot country, and award the lowest of the low, a knighthood.
I am of the age to remember well, the Kennedy's and all they got up to.

- Lynne, North East, 27/8/2009 11:51
Rating 84

Seems Ruth Dudley Edwards herself is not adverse to using "the Goebbels principle that
if a lie is big enough and is repeated often enough then people will come to believe it", If this
article is anything to go by!

- S O'Neill, Birmingham West Midlands, 27/8/2009 11:44
Rating 75

A well written article, and i agree with your assessment of this man, what I can't understand why, o why did he get knighted ??
Furthermore, I'm a great believer in the saying* people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones", you just have to look at America's own shameful history on how they treated the native Americans.

- dixie, Craigavon,N.I., 27/8/2009 11:06
Rating 74

A truly disgusting, hate-filled article, complete with skewed 'facts' and misinformation - bravo! bravo!

As is widely known, in later life Kennedy distance himself from some of the views he held when he was younger. Of course, you've decided to gloss over this.

I thought as a country we'd collectively grown up and shaken off our dewy eyed nostalgia for the British Empire and its particularly nasty form of patriotism. Obviously not.

- Frank Shankly, London, UK, 27/8/2009 11:05
Rating 134

Like many other real Irishmen, as opposed to the fake ones I've met in America, I had no regard for Ted Kennedy and his wrapping himself in the Irish flag to further an empty political career. He achieved absolutely nothing and his support for those who so casually committed murder in the North during those troubled times was sickening and cowardly. To be honest, I thought making him a knight was the best possible insult you could offer to this two-faced, drunken groper. To those in America, who regard this man as some sort of hero, I would say times must certainly be hard there when a nation such as yours treats this particular Kennedy as someone to look up to.

- George, New Brighton, 27/8/2009 11:04
Rating 112

Kennedy was an enemy of Britain. He encouraged niaive Irish American idiots to donate to the IRA cowards so that they murder 100's of inocent women and children. He left a young woman to drown. He was never a hero, more of a coward.

- trevn, Abu Dhabi, UAE, 27/8/2009 11:01
Rating 130

Kennedy was knighted for one simple reason; the Left take care of their own.

- Niles Cooke, County Antrim, 27/8/2009 10:58
Rating 95

You can tell a person by the company they keep - Bliar and McBroon kept some real Slimeballs for their company.

- mike randall, worcester england, 27/8/2009 10:55
Rating 87

"Ted Kennedy loathed Britain - so why did Gordon Brown knight him?"

Because Brown loathes Britain too.

- David Bourke, Rochester, Kent., 27/8/2009 10:54
Rating 83

Brown hates Britain just as much as kennedy did so he had to go along with him and back him up !.

- Ken, Lincoln, England, 27/8/2009 10:53
Rating 68

Edwards is a unionist writer, who, along with the British establishment, resents that Kennedy - unlike the British establishment - brought a life-saving peace and social justice to Northern Ireland which will probably lead to a united Ireland. Kennedy didn't hate the British, just Britain's vile sectarian politics. Catholics cannot be British Monarch and it is virtually impossible for a Catholic to be elected Prime Minister in Westminster.If Edwards is so concerned about sleaze, why does she not turn her forensic eye to the antics of Royals such as Princess Margaret, Edward the seventh and others? Has she got any hard evidence that Joseph Kennedy was a bootlegger? And as bad as that would, be, it beats the billions some British aristocracts and merchants made out of slavery. At least Edward Kennedy improved civil rights for millions of Americans and saved lives with social welfare legislation, which goes some way to making up for his disgraceful behaviour at Chappaquiddick.

- michael, dublin, ireland, 27/8/2009 10:51
Rating 95

I think it is disgraceful that Edward Kennedy was given a knighthood.

Connor, Windlesham. If you hate Britain so much, why are you living here?

- Anne, Lancashire, 27/8/2009 10:39
Rating 65

There is no mention in this piece of the abuses inflicted on the minority in Northern Ireland, such as in housing, healthcare , education and police intimidation, that Ted Kennedy directed his energies towards. There is a difference between condemning systematic insitutionalised sectarianism, while all sides to the conflict now admit was a mistake, and condoning the the violence that arose from such abuses. Ted Kennedy always condemned terrorist attacks and never once encouraged violence in Northern Ireland. What more can you ask for?
I notice that the article also contains no mention of Kennedy's work in speaking out against apartheid, his active work in improving healthcare and minimum wage in America and his effors to find a peaceful solution to the cold war. This article is a juvenile attempt to exploit the the emotional immaturity of middle England, just as the true parties of the conflict are moving on and appreciating the role Kennedy played in bringing us to where we are today

- John Brown, London, 27/8/2009 10:35
Rating 56

Not a truer word spoken.

Ted was an enemy of Britain, to heap praise on him is an act of treason.

- Tesla, London, England, 27/8/2009 10:34
Rating 63

Report abuse

Ted Kennedy like his brothers was no saint. However, he was a great politician especially on the social front. He was probably the last patrician in American politics. We respect him for this, and we shall miss him.

- Michael Hartmann, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 27/8/2009 10:29
Rating 80

Good to read an unembroidered valete - for a change. To me Kennedy came across as the most insincere, hypocritical and unbelievable US politician of his era. No doubt we'll all miss him terribly.

- Rick, Johannesburg, South Africa, 27/8/2009 10:11
Rating 106

Back by unpopular demand!
I don't often read this paper but after Edward Kennedy died Ithought it would be just typical for the Mail to be among the first to heap abuse on a still warm corpse. And lo, I was not disappointed! Keep up the good work

- kevo, weston-super-mare, 27/8/2009 10:10
Rating 161

One of the few comical episodes in the "Troubles" was when a visiting Kennedy, I forget which one, turned to a soldier and said, "Why don't you get out of this country". The soldier replied, "Why don't you, I was born and bred here". Such was the depth of understanding of the Americans. He did a lot of damage to America too, facilitating the mass immigration of Third World peoples which will cause immense grief and problems to generations unborn - as it will also in Britain.

- Fred, Horsham, 27/8/2009 10:07
Rating 135

Nor did he serve the interests of Britain,

This could be applied to Bliar and brown too and the majority of the liebour party.

- a.langley, sitts,kent, 27/8/2009 9:58
Rating 101

Why would any Irishman trust Britain? Connor , Windlesham

Obviously many trust us enough to live here ?

I think statistics may prove that the Nazi genocide in Russia alone, during WWII , may somewhat eclipse your slightly prejudiced manipulation of the facts regarding supposed British genocide. Yes we were a colonial power, expanding our Empire at the time with a large human cost BUT so were many , many other countries & empires ( Roman , Ottoman , Spanish , French, German etc ) during history its not an exclusively British trait !

Dont forget the Americans also got extremely rich & powerful on the back of the slave trade which also wiped out whole generations of Africans over many years.

I wish the Brit haters would take off their blinkers once in a while as its getting rather tiresome. There is nothing we can do to change what went on in the past but there are always lessons to be learned & hopefully we can all move forward together as civilised human beings ?

- Ian Pocock, Banbury Oxon, 27/8/2009 9:53
Rating 102

Of course Kennedy was 'kinghted'. He has all the credentials of a New Labour hero, doesn't he? First, a well-documented history of unsavoury doings that you would have bet money would have finished anyone with honour. He ploughed on regardless. Then there is his support for one side in the Irish troubles, to the point of influencing Britsh government attitudes to the IRA, particularly under New Labour, which has always supported anything non-British. Finally, Kennedy was, in all but name, because he could not have mentioned the word in Amercan politics, a full blooded corporate socialist, of the Clinton/Obama variety.

Stalin used to influence history by having people who were unpopular airbrushed out of pictures and re-writing the history books. This sick making praise of Kennedy is the perversion of the truth in order to create another American myth.

- John Bull, Wolverhampton, England, 27/8/2009 9:44
Rating 128

Mr Connor, Windlesham - Do you ever question the Irish Immigrants actions who defected to the U.S. to form a significant proportion of the "Americans" who ousted and killed the indiginous population of the native "True" American?

- Thomas, Dubai, 27/8/2009 9:43
Rating 84

In the good? old days Tony Blair would have been hung for High Treason against the Crown for prosecuting an illegal war against Iraq, poor old Gordon Brown would never have got past Hadrians Wall to rob the English of their gold reserves and pensions, and Peter Mandelson would have been deported in chains to the Colonies for; well....er; being Peter Mandelson; but times change and events move on.
The unsung heroine that really deserves our praise for stomaching all this stage managed humbug over the eulogizing of Ted Kennedy is of course Her Majesty the Queen who must be spitting feathers at the thought of her elected Government of the day praising the individuals and institutions that can only ever be considered to be pretenders to the Throne.
The Black Watch must be sharpening their dirks at the thought of Bonny Prince Brown returning to Scotland to face the music in disgrace after the next General Election.

- Catch-42, Macclesfield, Cheshire., 27/8/2009 9:38
Rating 59

Connor Windlesham "Why would any Irishman trust Britain"

Assume you do as you live here.

- Gary, Lightwater Surrey, 27/8/2009 9:36
Rating 81

He was featured on a news item, sometime in the 70's, relating to Northern Ireland, saying to a British Soldier "Why don't you go back to your own country" and the soldier said "This is my own country, you should go back to yours" I did hear that the soldier was reprimanded for this!

- John, Basingstoke, 27/8/2009 9:28
Rating 78

I thought everbody knew that Kennedy was knighted "For services to the IRA".

- Tom Williams, Oxford UK, 27/8/2009 9:20
Rating 186

Connor - 2 illegal wars? Oh, you mean the one's we are drawn into at the behest of the Americans?

And i'm sure if you look in the history books you will be able to dig up even more events that occured 300+ years ago.

- Mal, Norfolk, 27/8/2009 9:16
Rating 80

Congratulations to Ruth for telling it as it is.

- andrew o'brien, selsey,england, 27/8/2009 9:13
Rating 96

The misinformed writer misses the point that many British PMs would prefer not to have been involved in Northern Ireland politics and were well served by the intervention of US Senators, such as Ted Kennedy. This article is full of biased codswallop. Kennedy did a lot to draw attention to a down-trodden province in much need of transparency and justice.

- Pete, Brussels, Belgium, 27/8/2009 9:07
Rating 172

By your logic anyone who wanted Northern Ireland to stay part of the UK supported the UFF and UVF.

"Goebbels principle that if a lie is big enough and is repeated often enough then people will come to believe it,"

You mean, like you trying to associate Ted Kennedy with Republican violence even though he always opposed it.

- Martin K, Manchester, 27/8/2009 8:58
Rating 138

Spot on Ruth ! - the sickening fawning & faux grief at his passing by Obama, Blair & others is truly nauseating to say the least. Why does he deserve any repect ?

Never speak ill of the dead is a good philosophy however i would also prefer not to even mention his passing as he was certainly no saint as currently being portrayed by some deluded fools.

The man only changed his views in relation to Ireland when it became clear the tide had turned completely against him & he thought he could wring out a few more votes by becoming ' peacemaker ' !

- Ian Pocock, Banbury Oxon, 27/8/2009 8:47
Rating 107

Answer :- because Brown is useless and inept who wanted a bit of publicity and to curry favour with Obama.

- Jeff, Norfolk, 27/8/2009 8:41
Rating 83

It is generally understood from History that Ted Kennedy was "no friend of Britain".

In giving an honorary knighthood to him, does this not place Mr Brown in the same category?

- Rex, York, 27/8/2009 8:35
Rating 217

The reason was to suck up to the Americans. Simple really.

- Colin, Leeds England, 27/8/2009 8:14
Rating 167

At last !! Somebody in the media willing to stand up & say the truth about this vile man - good riddance !!

- Hawke, Pioussay. France, 27/8/2009 8:13
Rating 200

Thank goodness someone has the guts to tell the true about this man.

- Dick Conway, San Miguel de Salinas, Spain, 27/8/2009 8:13
Rating 205

Maybe they will Gadaffi an honorary knighthood next.

- Robert Browne, liverpool England, 27/8/2009 7:58
Rating 164

You forget that Britain has been in more wars and killed more people than any other nation on Earth. Britain holds the world record for the quickest genocide in history when the Tasmanian Aborigines were wiped out over 72 years.
Mr. Kennedy knew Britain's track record full well which it continues to this day with it's 2 current, but illegal, wars against innocent peoples.
You forget that when Cromwell first visited Dublin in the 17th century with 100 ships, he then proceeded to murder 500,000 Irish men, women and children over the next 4 years.
Why would any Irishman trust Britain?

- Connor, Windlesham, 27/8/2009 7:35
Rating 205

Finally, a commentator and journalist who can call a spade a shovel.

Edward Kennedy was in public life for one reason and one reason only - to raise his own profile and act out his megalomanic agenda.

I'll bet the biggest regret in his life was offering to drive Mary Jo Kopechne. But for that one incident, he would surely have achieved what he believed was his birthright - the US Presidency.

There has been some much anguish and outpouring for this man that you could be mistaken into thinking that they were eulogising a man who was upstanding and had some morals.

As for Brown the Clown bestowing him with an honorary knighthood speaks volumes about how little understanding he has/had of Ted Kennedy and the Kennedy Factor.

- Maria, Staines, Middlesex, 27/8/2009 7:30
Rating 95

A more accurate article than the praises being heaped on this dead politician.
Why did he receive and accept an honorary knighthood from Britain and what did he do exactly to effect peace?

- Frank, Brighton, 27/8/2009 7:13
Rating 76

A great politician has passed away, of course he had faults,he is only human, one thing he did have,was a backbone, not like our spineless ,pathetic excuse for politcians. so R.I.P Teddy.

- JOHN LYNCH, FIFE.UK, 27/8/2009 7:01
Rating 165

Excellent piece. Good to see there are still some individuals that honour the truth. This man was a lying parasite of the worst, self-serving sort.

The world is a better place without him and maybe now the family of the girl he left to drown in the dark, alone can maybe start to move on.

- Hamish, Dubai, 27/8/2009 7:00
Rating 91

Supporting Irish nationalism does not in any way equate to "loathing Britain" any more than recognizing and supporting the independence of any of the many modern countries that were once under the dominion of the British Empire amounts to "loathing Britain."

- Mary Barron, Colorado Springs, US, 27/8/2009 6:43
Rating 127

Everything in this article is true and I'm pleased to see it in print after listening to the sentimental muck I have heard in the last 24hrs.

- britinoz, Oz, 27/8/2009 6:41
Rating 101

well said ma'am

- hobnob, uk, 27/8/2009 6:34
Rating 84

Well said Ms Edwards..The Kennedy clan have ALWAYS put their "Irish roots" above everything else when it came to British politics..Ted Kennedy had a VERY closed mind when it came to the truth about the IRA. This is why politics and politicians can be so dangerous to any country when they WILL NOT listen to the truth . Sadly in American politics money can buy you power and to have a man like ted with any sort of power and influence (tho thankfully he NEVER made president) has caused many nations many problems!

- Beverley, Chichester, 27/8/2009 6:22
Rating 92

Great article, lousy senator.

- Scott Miller, Houston, Texas USA, 27/8/2009 4:36
Rating 104

So, Brown was 'repulsed' by the welcome Megrahi received. Well I'm equally 'repulsed' by Brown saying that he was proud to have known E.Kennedy. After his shabby history of Chappaquiddick (i.e. getting away with murder) 'proud' would be the very last word I would use. It's time Brown got in touch with public opinion.

- lizzie, Leeds, 27/8/2009 4:25
Rating 103


I completely agree with everything in your article.

- Audit Queen, Knoxville, Tennessee USA, 27/8/2009 4:17
Rating 94

It shouldn't be forgotten that his father was a bootlegger and had ties to organized crime. Indeed, it's been said that John F. Kennedy won the presidency solely due to help from Cosa Nostra.

- Alastair, Salem, USA, 27/8/2009 4:04
Rating 100

It's never a time to speak ill of the dead especiall

y in the manner which Ruth Dudley Edwards did in this space. Show me a mortal individual who has unblamish past, no skeletons in the closet, who never promotes him or herself first, and I'll rejoice in her venomous comment towards the dead Ted Kennedy.

Her commentary is more unsavoury than Ted Kennedy himself.

- annaree, fl,us, 27/8/2009 3:57
Rating 165

Well he made Mendelson a lord didn't he and everybody hates him

- John Bickerton, Lima . Peru, 27/8/2009 3:56
Rating 91

The man was rotten to the core and im not sad to see the end of him, the whole Kennedy clan was built on corruption and lies, sure there might well have been a curse on them but they mainly brought it on themselves.

- Chris Sneesby, York, UK, 27/8/2009 3:44
Rating 105

The worst Senator we have ever had. Drives his car off of a bridge when he is completely smashed. Walks home, goes to bed and does not tell anyone that he has a girl in the car with him, and that she still might be alive(she was for more than 30 minutes).
Not one day in jail, because of his precious name.

Good Riddance.

- Rich, Phoenix, Arizona, 27/8/2009 2:39
Rating 131

I couldn't agree more. So glad someone in the media is willing to print the truth about this disgusting man and his vile extended family.

- Grace, Mpls., MN USA, 27/8/2009 2:25
Rating 111

Kennedy was also a liar and a cheat!!!!!!!!
Bill Davidson Taree Australia

- Bill Davidson, Taree Australia, 27/8/2009 1:05
Rating 104

Good article and a very accurate picture of this man. He will not be missed, a coward who ran away from a dying girl and a supporter of the murder of innocents by the IRA. No wonder Gordon Brown knighted him, he is a "bottler" himself.

- ken, south london, 27/8/2009 0:39


© Ruth Dudley Edwards